Repair and Maintenance: April 2019

Repair and Maintenance: April 2019

It feels good to be back among the Texas Saltwater Fishing Magazine writers and contributors. The feedback received during our absence from supporters is an encouragement to know that sharing the repair service and maintenance concerns we address every day are enjoyed by the TSFMAG family every month.

The accompanying photo shows a water pump impeller and housing from an almost new engine with only 40 hours of operation on the meter. The owner asked a series of questions; “Why did the water pump melt? Is this normal? How can it be resolved?”

The water pump melted from either lack of water, or aerated water, running through it. This is not unusual if the right conditions exist, and yes, it is avoidable.

We see this occasionally on outboards where a jackplate is involved. The area where the water pump is located is in the area above the lower unit where it meets the exhaust housing; this is where the bolts hold the lower unit in place, and the water intakes are about 6-inches on average below this split.

The gearcase split-line needs to be submerged when starting the engine, and the pump allowed to prime before throttling up. When the water pressure gauge indicates pressure, the motor is ready to accelerate.

In conclusion, a water pump not submerged or too high from the waterline cannot pull water up through the intake screens and then into the impeller/housing area. A new water pump and a slight modification to the owner’s operating technique solved the problem.

Have a great spring fishing season!

Chris Mapp
Coastal Bend Marine | Port O’Connor, TX | 361-983-4841